"I have a classic story of not allowing life getting me down. I grew up in a small country town in South West NSW
I was then lucky to have a group of teachers at high school who taught me that I was talented academically and encouraged me to continue my education.
I quickly learnt that education was my ticket out of my small town. I somehow knew that having an education and leaving home then my life would automatically fall in place. So I studied hard, left school, went to University, became a woman, joined the public service and now I work in the private sector (IBM).
I normally work on some of the more complex and difficult projects in which IBM has in both Australia and New Zealand.
I have been able to progress my career as a Senior Managing Consultant without any barrier to my success as a transgender woman in a predominantly male-dominated industry. I am proud to be our Australian EAGLE representative (Employee Alliance for Gay and Lesbian Empowerment), and to help others feel the same inclusiveness and empowerment that I have experienced.
One of the biggest challenges that I have constantly experienced along my journey especially in the business worlds was that felt for many, many years that I was the “only transgender in the village” and I hate to say it but for many years I was.
And I am pleased that after 25 odd years that there is now more than just me and that I no longer have that feeling of isolation nor so I have having the sole burden of breaking down any stereotypes that people have around transgender people especially in the corporate world.
That change has come about due to the invaluable support that organisations like SGLBA (and others like Trans Sydney Pride) continue to show a path for the LGBTI community in the business world. It is through this ongoing support that we can help break down the many stereotypes that we have all experienced over the years.
Whilst I do personally find the label of trans redundant, but I must remember that I am an elder and leader in the trans community. And I need to embrace the label and stand up and show others that you can be trans and have a successful career in the corporate world.
With its sheer size and scope, IBM offers a unique opportunity to work with some of the world's top companies to solve their most complex problems, and to work in different disciplines, business units or countries. At IBM, the opportunities are limitless, for every employee.
IBM places a great deal of value on diversity in its workforce, ultimately enabling and encouraging people to be who they are. IBM knows and understands the importance of creating an inclusive and welcoming environment to allow employees to be their true selves and to be proud of who they are."
Besides my work on this project, I am a public speaker and diversity consultant. My full time job is at Uniting where I am responsible for the provision of project, change and coaching expertise in the delivery and adoption of LGBTI specific learning strategies resulting in more informed decisions, better access and culturally appropriate aged care service provision. Prior to that I worked at ACON. Recently someone wrote this very lovely description of what I did there.
"Prior to starting at Uniting, Kimberly had for the last two years worked very closely on all of ACON's diversity initiatives. She has spoken at Diversity Council Australia (DCA) Seminars on gender diversity (women in leadership), has spoken at several conferences and universities on gender diversity, all with fabulous unsolicited feedback.
She has provided thought leadership on many diversity topics and has been a subject matter expert on the Rainbow Tick accreditation (LGBTI Inclusive Service Provision) and the inclusion of transgender and gender diverse people within the workforce. She has insights that would be hard to attribute to others on gender diversity having worked and conversed much of her adult life presenting as male and then experiencing the loss of privilege, power (for want of a better word) as a female – her understanding of gender privilege, power and micro aggressions is incredibly compelling and adds significant weight to many of ACONs diversity arguments. Her most significant work has been on the inclusion of transgender and gender diverse people within the recruitment process, her work on LGBTI inclusive service provision and the preliminary setup of the Pride in Health & Wellbeing program. She is a fabulous speaker and trainer."
I don't really identify as a trans woman, simply as a woman. In my previous role and in my public speaking I feel it important that I share my story, so that is when you will find me speaking of my trans history. It is important that those of us who are employed, and our employers, speak up about the contribution that trans people can make to a workplace.
I am seeking not only sponsorship for this page but also sponsorship of my own professional development. I wish to complete the following and would appreciate sponsors assisting me. The course fees ($9900 plus GST) are well outside of my financial reach
A seven month development program for middle to senior leaders.
Your assistance is appreciated